By Donnie Peters
The Season XVII WPT Choctaw Championship final table lasted less than four hours, with Brady Holiman (pictured) emerging victorious to claim the $469,185 first-place prize and enter the prestigious WPT Champions Club. Holiman topped a field of 755 entries at Choctaw Casino & Resort and eliminated four of his five opponents at the final table. The victory was the largest of Holiman’s career, and we’ll now see him compete in the season-ending WPT Tournament of Champions.
WPT Choctaw Final Table Results
1st: Brady Holiman – $469,185*
2nd: Viet Vo – $302,725
3rd: Christopher Smith – $223,370
4th: Tony Ruberto – $$166,605
5th: Anthony Zinno – $125,630
6th: Timothy Domboski – $95,780
*First place includes a $15,000 seat into the season-ending WPT Tournament of Champions.
The first elimination of the final table came on the 21st hand of action when Timothy Domboski was eliminated by Holiman. Domboski four-bet jammed with two kings and Holiman called with the . Holiman flopped and ace and held from there to score a massive knockout.
Zinno, a three-time WPT champion looking for his record-tying fourth WPT title, fell on the 85th hand of the final table. Like Domboski before him, Zinno was knocked out by Holiman. This time, a short-stacked Zinno moved all in with the . Holiman called with the and won after the runout.
The other WPT champion at the final table, Tony Ruberto, was next out the door, and he was eliminated just one hand after Zinno. Ruberto moved all in from the cutoff seat with the . Holiman picked up two queens and called from the small blind. The queens held to busted Ruberto in fourth place.
Holiman took a break from knocking people out and let Viet Vo take care of the third-place elimination. Vo’s had the of Christopher Smith dominated. A clean runout kept Vo’s ace high as the best hand and Smith was gone in third.
Heads-up play saw Holiman enter with the lead. His 17.775 million in chips were more than 5 million ahead of Vo’s stack of 12.425 million. From there, it took Holiman just 17 hands to seal the deal.
On the final hand, with the blinds at 100,000-200,000 with a 200,000 big blind ante, Vo made it 450,000 to go on the button. Holiman three-bet to 1.2 million, then Vo reraised with a four-bet to 2.7 million. Holiman took some time, then moved all in. He had Vo covered, and Vo snap-called for 9.9 million total with the . Holiman had the . The flop came to vault Holiman into the lead with trips. The turn was the , and the river was the . With that, Vo finished in second place and took home $320,725.
In addition to winning nearly $470,000 in prize money, Holiman scooped up 1,200 points in the Hublot WPT Player of the Year race. He’s now in a points tie with Simon Lam, but Lam does hold the tiebreaker of most money won.
Borgata Up Next for the WPT Main Tour
Next up for the WPT Main Tour is the Season XVII WPT Borgata Poker Open Championship. Taking place September 16-21, 2018, this $3,500 buy-in event will once again take place at Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa in Atlantic City and features a $3 million guarantee on the prize pool.
Photography by Joe Giron / PokerPhotoArchive.com
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